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Sol Cat @ The Northstar Bar – 7.10.15

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Catching live music is easy. Finding a truly unique and well-rounded show is the difficult part. Friday’s Sol Cat debut at Philadelphia’s Northstar Bar was one of those show rarities. Sol Cat has been on the road for the better part of a decade. This hard touring band is comprised of a group of musicians all honed and polished in the limelight of Nashville Tennessee’s fantastic music scene. As of late that scene has been producing a jaw-dropping mix of garage rock that has the music scene taking cues and notice. From Jeff the Brotherhood to Diarrhea Planet, Nashville is the place to be playing rock music. Sure Sol Cat is not yet a well-known band. Selfishly I enjoy when a band hovers just below the surface of greatness, but these guys are hungry, playing with passion and all deserving of larger things. Having just released the EP Uno featuring songs that I’ve heard them road-test for a while, it was no surprise that they moved the crowd the same way they have always done. The EP polished the road off the songs where their live show gave them a bit more wiggle room. It allowed singer Brett Hammann to wax poetic on “Dirty Glasses” and Guitarists Jaan Cohan and Johny Fisher to link up to create musical magic during “Body Like That.” Sol Cat delved into some the jams and moments that showcase them at the height of their game as musicians.

What made this night eclectic and wonderful was the not just one of my favorite bands from Nashville, but a combination of two wildly different opening bands. The first local surprise was unplanned and it seemed that the tour manager pulled some strings or friends in the form of Field Graves aka Ruby the Hatchet, after another band dropped off the bill. Ruby the Hatchet appeared to be missing their drummer so lead singer Jillian Taylor hung back on the kit as the band jammed quite loosely and freely through a hazy set of tracks off of Valley of the Snake including a twisted and wildly psychedelic version of “Vast Acid.” As we dug into our second brown liquid drink of the evening it was fairly clear this pop-up Ruby the Hatchet show was a secret treat especially when you consider that the band will headline Underground Arts in a week. Sandwiched in-between Sol Cat and RTH were the Shy Boyz a group that was as much about putting on a show as they were about playing music. Think a combination featuring Of Montreal meets a soulful version of Balkan Beat Box. It turned into a spectacle featuring men in diapers, but it kept us entertained and energized for Sol Cat.

The Sol Cat set began with Brett Hammann uncorking a tight and bounding version of “Fishing with John” that saw relative newcomer to the band Jeremy Clark on keyboards keep the groove going strong with his left hand moving the bass lines off of his keys and into our ears. “Tumbleweed” had the small crowd up, but it was a “Body Like That” which sent Jillian Taylor and her buddies from Ruby The Hatchet into a synchronized dance front and center of the stage. It was a perfect move from the other band because guitarists Jaan Cohan and Johny Fisher went with the ladies vibe as the whole room let the song take control and shook to it. The band remarked several times how eclectic the Philadelphia scene was on their first visit. The beauty of Sol Cat is that they have a sound that can fit into a lot of places. You can dance to it, nod your head to it, or just relax with their sound. The wide variety of opening sounds helped introduce the talent and variety coming from this new Nashville staple. Sol Cat is a band you dream about late night when you’re in need of a musical fix. When you’re hot and the summer humidity is melting you away, Sol Cat plays you the music you need to escape.

Peep a selection of the Sol Cat show in the video below featuring bits of “Fishing With John,” “Dirty Glasses,” and “Body Like That”

New Madrid – Live at Milkboy – 2.19.15

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New Madrid – Live at Milkboy Philly – 2.19.15 from Jake Krolick on Vimeo.

Nels Cline Singers – Coming to Johnny Brenda’s – May 2

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Cline and company are playing Philadelphia Friday May 2 to support of their Forthcoming LP, MACROSCOPE, Out April 29 via Mack Avenue Records
The band is amazing and features Guitarist NELS CLINE, Drummer SCOTT AMENDOLA And Bassist TREVOR DUNN
Plus Special Guest, percussion stud CYRO BAPTISTA.

Check out the Nels Cline Singers from the 2010 High Sierra Music Festival shredding on a cover of “Maggot Brain” on a Sunday Morning in the opening minutes of this video!

Last Blockley Show Video

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Live at the Blockley – Three Years of shows In Philly

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With The Blockley closing soon at the end of this month it felt like I should uncork the past years in memories. I met Chris Perella in March of 2011 after he contacted me when he saw a video I made of Akron/Family playing at the Blockley. I went into the club a few days later and we chatted about me shooting video at more shows. Now it’s the end of 2013 and I sit a bit shocked and saddened by the news of the Blockley closing its doors for the foreseeable future. Chris and Jesse opened the Blockley up and just let many of us do what we wanted to creatively. I am really happy to have a record of these past few years to share with others. The following are just some of the many memories that many of us shared at this club over the past years. Kudos to the entire Blockley staff for making this place shine as a stunning example of what the Philadelphia music scene can be at its finest moments. It was driven by Chris and company who are fans of music first and produced shows as much for them as all of us, the live music fans of Philadelphia. These past few years have made me really proud to be part of our scene.
Cheers to the Blockley!
Jake Krolick

This could take you a bit of time, but I promise it’s a worthwhile visual trek through these past few years at the Blockley in the videos below. These include several Akron/family shows, a bunch of Marco Benevento shows including the evening with The Soul Rebels, an evening with Otis Day and the Knights, Lettuce, Arrested Development, Kermit Ruffins, The Mother Hips, Israel Vibration, The Everyone Orchestra, The Funky Meters, Bombino and many more.

Akron/Family 3.4.11

Marco Benevento 6.24.11

Mutaytor 7.6.11

Jim Jones revue 9.16.11

New Mastersounds and Soul Rebels Brass Band 11.19.11

Akron/Family with the Sun Ra Arkestra 1.20.12

Promo for Otis Day and the Knights Feb 2011

Show with Otis Day

Marco Benevento with the Soul Rebels Brass Band 2.24.12

Dumpstaphunk 6.2.12

Arrested Development 9.26.12

Marco Benevento 10.13.12

Kermit Ruffians 10.12.12

Cheers Elephant 11.30.12

Reptar 12.6.12

Rubblebucket 12.6.12

The Mother Hips 11.29.12

Israel Vibration 3.9.13

The London Souls 3.21.13

The Everyone Orchestra 4.19.12

Lettuce 5.16.13

The Funky Meters 10.1.13

The Mother Hips 11.15.13

Bombino 12.5.13

Broncho live at the Kung-Fu Necktie “Try Me Out Sometime”

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J. Roddy Walson & The Business – “Heavy Bells” Live in Philly

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King Tuff – Live in Philadelphia

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Banging live versions of “Alone and Stoned” and “Dancing On You”

Hopscotch Music Festival 2013

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So I was pulled down to Raleigh NC this Sept for the Hopscotch Music Festival. This festival is a hidden gem! Think a smaller 3 day version of SXSW with free day performances and 20 venues hosting evening performance from the likes of 300+ bands. I had a blast watch the two video recaps of Hopscotch and learn more by visiting http://hopscotchmusicfest.com/

Friday Video Mash-up

Saturday Video Mash-up

Jamaican Queens – Interview and Performance

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